Don Bosco Philippines South Province

Salesians of Don Bosco – Philippine South Province FIS

Namuncura: A Wise Virgin

26 August 2022, Friday of the 21st Week in the Ordinary Time

Mt 25: 1-13

Memorial of Blessed Zephyrinus Namuncura

According to Sr Bernardita Dianzon, FSP, parables are not only stories that make a single point; they provoke us to react, to ask questions and to think deeply and respond to their own questions.  What questions can we raise after listening to the Gospel reading?

Being wise is a good trait.  We like people who are not only intelligent but are wise.  But in today’s Gospel reading, I am just wondering why the wise virgins have failed to help the foolish ones.  With this, the question that I would like to pose is this:  Is Jesus’ challenging statement that says, “Stay awake” applicable also to the wise who have failed to exercise responsibility toward the foolish ones?

Jesus’ final statement isn’t only for those who lack preparedness and foresight but it is also addressed to those who know more and are entrusted with more.  Our responsibility to one another is the common ground where we can practice faith that does justice.  This is the point of being awake in the Lord.  When we do things with love, the Lord will certainly tell us, “I know you.  Welcome to my wedding banquet.”

Today, we remember Blessed Zephyrinus Namuncura, a native from Rio Negro, of the Patagonia region, in Argentina.  He wanted to become a Salesian but this was never realized because at the age of 19 he died in Rome.  Yes, he never became a Salesian but to him, Jesus said these words, “I know you.  Welcome to my wedding banquet.”

What did Zephyrinus do that he was recognized by our Lord?  The journey to Salesian life is long.  But even as an aspirant, Zephyrinus cultivated values and virtues that made him wise.  He was exemplary in his piety, charity, daily duties and practice of mortification.  He had an apostolic spirit by being a good friend to his fellow aspirants. He was never persecuted.  He was never tortured. No blood was shed.  He only followed Don Bosco’s formula of sanctity:  Do your ordinary duties extraordinarily well. He studied with such commitment that he was second in class. In his heart, he wanted to be a Salesian “for God and for country”, pro Deo et Patria.  In a way, Zephyrinus is the embodiment of Don Bosco’s vision for every youth:  good Christians and honest citizens.

Zephyrinus Namuncura’s apostolate of good example is the little way that he found, that he walked so that he could be welcomed by Our Lord at the very door of the heavenly banquet.  He never existed for his own.  He learned, he lived and he loved for God and for others.  He never kept the oil for himself.  Ever alive, alert, awake and enthusiastic, Zephyrinus Namuncura shared that oil with those who lack. 

Stay awake!  The time of waiting for the coming of Our Lord is meant to be spent in making our lives as gifts for one another, in our families, in friendship, in our works and chores, in studies, in games, in all things that God can be glorified.  Amen. 

Disclaimer: This section of the website is a personal creative writing of the author and does not necessarily reflect the official views, opinion, or policies of the Salesians of Don Bosco – Philippines South Province. For concerns on the content, style, and grammar of this piece, please contact us.

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